Armed police stage anti-terror training exercise at shopping centre

Armed police stage anti-terror training exercise at shopping centre

Armed police have held an anti-terror training exercise at one of Europe's biggest shopping centres.

Northumbria Police tested its firearms team's skills in the early hours of Wednesday when the intu Metrocentre in Gateshead was closed.

The operation, which was not staged in response to any specific threat, also involved other emergency services and the local authority.

Assistant Chief Constable Darren Best said it was routine to hold these types of exercise.

He said: "The national terror threat remains at 'Severe' and recent events across the continent and in the country show that we need to ensure we are prepared in the event that something does happen in our region.

Armed police stage anti-terror training exercise at shopping centre

"It is important that we continue to test our emergency response procedures to ensure the safety of our local communities."

The area around the shopping centre beside the A1 was tightly controlled and police said there was no impact on the public.

Simon Swallow, head of resilience at North East Ambulance Service, said: "This was a great opportunity to test how we all work together in a major incident and without intu we couldn't have created as realistic a scenario to work with."

Armed police stage anti-terror training exercise at shopping centre

Gavin Prior, general manager intu Metrocentre, said: "This training, planning and preparation to deal with all eventualities is essential and we had no hesitation allowing them to use our facilities for their exercise while the centre was closed."

- PA

More in this Section

May raises questions over Queen’s Speech immigration and justice plansMay raises questions over Queen’s Speech immigration and justice plans

Hillsborough match commander ‘deep in thought’ before giving order, court toldHillsborough match commander ‘deep in thought’ before giving order, court told

Celebrities supporting Extinction Rebellion admit to being hypocritesCelebrities supporting Extinction Rebellion admit to being hypocrites

Three arrested in connection with theft of gold toilet from Blenheim PalaceThree arrested in connection with theft of gold toilet from Blenheim Palace


Lifestyle

Food news with Joe McNamee.The Menu: All the food news of the week

Though the Killarney tourism sector has been at it for the bones of 150 years or more, operating with an innate skill and efficiency that is compelling to observe, its food offering has tended to play it safe in the teeth of a largely conservative visiting clientele, top-heavy with ageing Americans.Restaurant Review: Mallarkey, Killarney

We know porridge is one of the best ways to start the day but being virtuous day in, day out can be boring.The Shape I'm In: Food blogger Indy Power

Timmy Creed is an actor and writer from Bishopstown in Cork.A Question of Taste: Timmy Creed

More From The Irish Examiner